Connecting in the gray zone | 2019 BLINDSIDE EMERGING CURATOR MENTORSHIP
4 - 20 Dec 2019
Opening Night | Thursday 5 Dec, 6pm–8pm
CURATOR | Anador Walsh
MENTOR | Mark Feary, Artistic Director, Gertrude Contemporary
The 2019 Emerging Curator Mentor program is focused on curatorial research and the development of an exhibition at BLINDSIDE under the mentorship of Mark Feary, Artistic Director, Gertrude Contemporary.
The annual Emerging Curator Mentorship is supported by the Victorian Government through Creative Victoria and the City of Melbourne.
Arini Byng, Jes Gal + Rebecca Jensen, Eugene Choi, IchikawaEdward ie.––bs, Angela Goh, Isabella Hone-Saunders, Ivey Wawn
The current popularity of performance practice is indistinguishable from its mass proliferation through smartphones and social media.
By situating itself within this “gray zone”, where performance and digital technology converge, Connecting in the gray zone seeks to explore the role that the body plays in this space.
Connecting in the gray zone asks you to come, phone in hand, and spectate, as ten contemporary performance artists activate BLINDSIDE’s two gallery spaces through varied processes of physicality and participation.
Connecting in the gray zone is an exhibition that makes performance the main event, in order to interrogate the body’s continued relevance, as a conduit of connection, in an increasingly digital society.
This exhibition will be accompanied by a publication, featuring contributions by Anador Walsh, Brooke Stamp, Eugene Yiu Nam Cheung, Lizzie Thomson and Mark Feary.
Anador Walsh is a writer, curator and arts administrator living and working in Naarm (Melbourne). Currently, Anador is interested in contemporary communication and social theory, and the capacity of performance based practices to reflect on socio-cultural themes and their associated issues. Central to Anador’s curatorial practice is the creation of space for dialogue and relationship building between emerging and more established arts practitioners, as she believes that knowledge is at its most powerful when it is shared. Anador has held the professional positions of Marketing and Development Manager at Gertrude Contemporary, and Gallery Assistant at both Neon Parc and STATION Gallery, and has volunteered extensively in the not-for-profit sector, with galleries like ALASKA Projects.
Mark Feary has worked within the visual art sector for fifteen years in a range of contemporary art centres, universities, museumsand artist-led initiatives, with an emphasis on contemporary art and almost exclusively within the not-for-profit sector. Feary has worked in curatorial and programming roles at Australian Centre for Photography, Sydney; Artspace, Sydney; Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography; Centre for Contemporary Photography, Melbourne; and West Space, Melbourne.
Arini Byng, Jes Gal and Rebecca Jensen
Arini Byng works with the affective qualities of materials, gestures and settings - undertaking exercises in image, movement and form to negotiate political scenes. Her work has been exhibited across Australia including Blak Dot Gallery, Watch This Space, Neon Parc project space, c3 Contemporary Art Space, Hobiennale, Bus Projects, Slopes, Margaret Lawrence Gallery, The Australian Centre For Contemporary Art, and The Centre for Contemporary Photography; selected works published by Perimeter Editions, Higher Arc, Le Roy and Photofile; and with work held in publication collections of V&A, MoMA, MOCA, Tate Modern and NLA. Arini is of Australian, African American and Native American ancestries and lives and works in Naarm (Melbourne) on the unceded sovereign land of the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation.
Jes Gal, based in Naarm, works across multiple platforms using improvisation as a method of enquiry. Their work seeks to rupture, fragment and re-learn processes and values by composing collective and intimate experiences. Jes completed their BFA with Honours at RMIT, and is currently a resident at Dancehouse for the Emerging Choreographers Program. They have shown at TCB, Bus Projects, C3 contemporary art space, Neon Parc project space and BLINDSIDE.
Rebecca Jensen is a Melbourne based, New Zealand born, dancer, choreographer, and teacher. Rebecca’s work collages narratives, symbolism and physicality’s with an enduring interest in improvisational scores that examine social and ecological systems. Works include Deep Sea Dances Dance Massive 2017; Explorer Kier Choreographic Award finalist 2016; Blue Illusion VCA 2018, Spawn Venice Biennale College Dance 2018. As well as short works with Liquid Architecture, Spring Art Fair 1883 2016, Lucy Guerin Inc 2011. With Sarah Aiken, she has created What Am I Supposed To Do? (WAISTD) Art Centre Melbourne/Melbourne Fringe Take Over! 2019, OVERWORLD Next Wave Festival 2014/Dance Massive 2015 and Underworld Supercell Festival Brisbane/Northcote Town Hall 2017/Melbourne Knowledge Week 2019 and ongoing participatory project Deep Soulful Sweats presented locally, interstate and internationally.
Eugene Choi (b. 1993) is a performance-based artist whose practice has evolved around the physicality of constructing internal and external structures working across sculpture, performance, installation and video. Often influenced by the body in movement, Choi seeks comfort through intimate gestures, relying on the live response of her physical and emotional body. A self-made system of geometry becomes integral between objects, bodies and space, attempting to achieve equilibrium.
Angela Goh is a Sydney based dancer and choreographer working with dance in theatres, galleries, and telepathetic spaces. Her work considers the body in relationship to commodity, materiality, technology, and feeling. She approaches choreography as a situation and a container in which not yet formed relations can grow, and with them the possibility to access the world. Angela thinks of dance as a friend, as a condition with which to feel the world, as a bearer of knowledge, and as the point where everything starts and nothing ends. Her works have been presented widely in Australia as well as the USA, the UK, France, Belgium, Sweden, Finland, Taiwan, Germany, Norway, Estonia, Denmark and the Netherlands. She received the 2019/20 Create NSW Emerging Artist Fellowship and was named Best Artist in the 2017 FBi Sydney Music Arts and Culture awards.
Est. July 2017, IchikawaEdward is an open multi-disciplinary collaborative exchange. In its origins, ie. existed as a shared project primarily between artists Ichikawa Lee and Joshua Edward; having taken place in Naarm, (Melbourne). These artists studied alongside one another at the Victorian College of the Arts, following prior ventures of education in varying design practices.
Conceptually ie. grapples the realities of architectures and social infrastructures, digital landscapes as queer bodies, and the frictions of disability. These ideas are realised through mediums of installation, sculpture, performance, sound, digital media and creative writing.
Submitting to the flux – ie. matures and shifts – in environment and body.
The open nature of the collaboration has seen Artists Daniel Ward, Kirby Casilli, Marlia Stucci and now Brooke Smith, reinforce the investigative extensions of this practice. Tech-Artist Brooke Smith joins ie. with an arsenal of technology-based arts processes developed through her educational and professional background in Design & Technology. She is currently completing a Bachelor of Fine Arts at Parsons, The New School.
ie.––bs takes place between Naarm, (Melbourne) and Lenapehoking, (New York).
Isabella Hone-Saunders and 'Jes Gal'
Isabella Hone-Saunders is currently practicing as a curator, arts worker and artist in Narrm (so-called melbourne), on the unceded lands and water ways of the Boonwurrung and Woiwurrung (Wurundjeri) people of the Kulin nation.
Her curatorial practice is concerned with accessibility, representation and shared social responsibility, while examining with criticality, the inclusivity of public art spaces. She aims to interrogate modes and implement methodologies towards an ethical and activist informed curation.
Hone-Saunders’ artistic practice most utilises movement, with the use of video as preferred medium, often centering her body as a focal figure. She aims to explore ideas of body idealisation, physicality, residual body-language, identity and embodied readings and representations of gender constructs.
‘Jes Gal,’ based in Naarm, works across multiple platforms using improvisation as a method of enquiry. Their work seeks to rupture, fragment and re-learn processes and values by composing collective and intimate experiences. Jes completed their BFA with Honours at RMIT, and is currently a resident at Dancehouse for the Emerging Choreographers Program. They have shown at TCB, Bus Projects, C3 contemporary art space, Neon Parc project space and BLINDSIDE.
Ivey Wawn makes dance-based work for various contexts. Her artistic work and research centre on social relations and their historic specificities, with particular interest in relations of power, control and consent in the organisation of labour. She is committed to dance as a potential form of resistance to social abstraction and commodification. Her works have focused on the wage relation, microbial reproductive labour, commodity fetishism, and invisibility among other things.
She was commissioned by Kaldor Public Art Projects to make Surfacing (2019) in the frame of Project 34; Asad Raza’s Absorption. Greyness and Infinity (2017), was commissioned for Underbelly Arts Festival and presented at RMIT Design Hub (2018) with the support of Liquid Architecture. Adventure Dances (2016) was made with support from DirtyFeet, and Colour Dances (Spectral) have been shown at various galleries and art events in Sydney since 2016. She has a collaborative project with visual artist, Mark Mailler called Consejos de Farez, that has been supported by Critical Path and presented at First Draft Gallery. In 2020 Ivey is a Next Wave Festival artist.
Ivey works extensively as a performer primarily between Sydney and Melbourne, with national and international artists, including Amrita Hepi, Angela Goh, Atlanta Eke, Asad Raza, Brooke Stamp, Melanie-Jame Wolf, Rhiannon Newton, Tino Sehgal, Xavier Le Roy and more. She is grateful for the development support she has received from Ausdance NSW, Australia Council for the Arts, Bundanon Trust, Critical Path, DanceWEB Scholarship, DirtyFeet, Ian Potter Cultural Trust, Readymade Works, and more. Ivey also sells her labour as a waiter between projects and is a part-time student of Political Economy.
Brooke Stamp (b. Sydney 1979) is an Australian based dancer, performer and choreographer. Her artistic careerspans two-decades of inquiry in dance bridging visual art, sound-performance, writing and dramaturgy, alongside a prolific contributions to collaborative presentation for theatre and museum worldwide.
Stamp’s early career has been distinguished for stand-out performances for esteemed choreographers: Phillip Adams Balletlab (Melbourne), Miguel Gutierrez (NYC), Chunky Move, Shelley Lasica, Rebecca Hilton and Sandra Parker among others; earning her multiple Helpmann and Green Room Award nominations for best female performer. She was awarded an Australia Council Skills and Development Grant in 2005, to study NYC aged 25, and in 2017 was again recognized with the prestigious Australia Council Fellowship for Dance. The same year, Stamp was awarded an MFA from the UNSW Art and Design School.
Since 2011, Stamp’s name has become synonymous with contemporary arts discourse and choreography formuseum and gallery environments. She has performed in over 15 major galleries globally including in the works Some Cleaning and Some Trade by the Choreographer Adam Linder; at the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), the Hannah Hoffman Gallery (Los Angeles), The Wattis Institute (San Francisco), Kunsthalle Bern (Switzerland) and the The Grand Duke Jean Museum of Modern Art (Luxembourg). In 2020 she will perform new work by Linder at the Museum of Modern Art (NYC).
Eugene Yiu Nam Cheung is an art critic based in Berlin. His writing imagines non-Western and decolonial frameworks for contemporary art and culture. Eugene contributes to publications such as The Saturday Paper, 4A Papers, Art+Australia, Art Collector and Running Dog. Eugene holds degrees in art history, gender studies and law from The University of Sydney.
Lizzie Thomson is a choreographer, performer and researcher living and working on unceded Gadigal land of the Eora Nation. Over the past 20 years, she has performed extensively throughout Europe and Australia with artists including Rosalind Crisp, Marina Abramovic, Mette Edvardsen and Tino Sehgal. Her work has been supported and presented by organisations such as MAMA, Carriageworks, Performance Space, Campbelltown Arts Centre, the Art Gallery of NSW, Critical Path and ABC Arts. Lizzie regularly collaborates with artists and scholars including Agatha Gothe-Snape, Brian Fuata and Erin Brannigan, and has been engaged in several artistic projects in Nordic countries. Lizzie is undertaking a PhD in dance theory at the University of NSW. Her writing on dance has been published in books, journals and exhibition catalogues. She recently performed in a work by Mette Edvardsen in the Oslo Biennale and has written an essay about the project for Edvardsen’s new book Time has fallen asleep in the afternoon sunshine, published by the Oslo Biennale.
IMAGES | Angela Goh, Scum Ballet, 2018. Photograph Catherine McElhone | Jes Gal, Arini Byng and Rebecca Jensen, Sinkhole V (performance still), From To do/To Make curated by Shelley Lasica and Zoe Theodore in association with Neon Parc, 215 Albion Street Brunswick, Naarm (Melbourne), 2018. Photograph Jacqui Shelton | Eugene Choi, My mother only speaks Shanghainese when she talks to her brother on the phone (these plants are a gift for her), 2017, 2-channel video installation (dur. 8:38 & 11:27), galvanised steel pipe, cast steel clamps, pinewood, various plants | IchikawaEdward, ie.—bs (trial i.), 2019, mesh rendering | Isabella Hone-Saunders and ‘Jes Gal’, “dynamic values... an effective use of peripheral space”, 2019, two channel video work | Ivey Wawn, Greyness and Infinity, in Why Listen to Plants by Liquid Architecture at RMIT Design Hub, 2017. Photograph Keelan O'Hehir | Agatha Gothe-Snape with Brooke Stamp, for Here, an Echo, 20th Biennale of Sydney 2016. Photograph Rafaela Pandolfini | Eugene Yiu Nam Cheung, Headshot, 2019 | Lizzie Thomson, Inside Inside, Performance, MAMA, Exhibition Certain Realities curated by Michael Moran, 2019. Photograph Jules Boag | Courtey the writers and artists.